The outdated African-American proverb, “When you’re scared, get out of the membership,” is not only a warning for terrified patrons to depart the constructing; it is sage recommendation for coaches who do not like to look at the music.
For the second time this season, USC head soccer coach Lincoln Riley has acted like a presumptuous sports activities dad by blocking entry to reporters as a result of his rumored $110 million contract doesn’t permit him to manage every little thing linked to his program.
Utah defeated the Trojans 34-32 final Saturday in Los Angeles. It was Riley’s third loss to the Utes in two years, as Utah has defeated USC 4 straight. The Trojans’ goals of a Faculty Soccer Playoff look are over. Caleb Williams can say goodbye to a second Heisman Trophy in a row.
“Give the credit score to Utah. We performed three nice video games with them. Nice opponents. It was an incredible ballgame,” Riley stated, as he was the one one to talk to reporters after the sport since he has not made any gamers obtainable to the media.
This wasn’t a one-off, it is a sample of spine with Riley.
Simply final month, USC has reinstated a suspended beat reporter after Riley and the varsity banned Luca Evans of the Southern California Information Group for “violations of the Trojans’ media insurance policies” for doing his job. Verify this out For the win:
“Evans’ violations embrace quoting freshman tailback Quinten Joyner throughout a USC press convention — however not through the portion the place the staff wished him to speak — and greeting gamers and staffers he noticed on campus and emailing varied athletic division officers to introduce themselves as the brand new man on the town.”
The 2-week suspension, which was diminished to 1, was unhealthy sufficient. Riley’s clarification was even worse.
“I do not really feel like now we have too many guidelines and too many insurance policies.” Riley stated of the suspension, based on Jim Alexander of the Orange County Register. “However the ones we do have, we take critically, as a result of my first job – regardless that it’s a part of my job – will not be for the media, not for the followers, and never for anybody else. It is to guard our gamers. And at first, that can all the time be precedence primary.”
I do not assume educating his gamers about duty and mendacity within the mattress they made is a precedence for a coach who leads one of many greatest applications within the historical past of the game in a metropolis that may be a world media heart.
Nevertheless, this does not simply occur in LA
Final week the WNBA fined the New York Liberty $25,000 and staff members Sabrina Ionescu, Jonquel Jones and Betnijah Laney $2,000 as gamers declined media interviews after dropping the WNBA Finals remaining to the Las Vegas Aces on Liberty’s dwelling ground. Based on the league, the top coach and two gamers should attend post-game press conferences.
Gamers and coaches by no means draw back from questions after they win. It is solely an issue in the event that they lose video games they thought they’d win – that is the mentality of a coward.
However whereas Riley has been the ire of many within the press this season for his antics, he’s nowhere as unhealthy as a sure faculty soccer head coach that so many within the media have been obsessive about for months: Deion Sanders.
In 2021, the black coach had a black reporter banned after Sanders and Jackson State College blocked former Clarion-Ledger reporter Rashad Milligan from reporting on the staff. Milligan ready to ask some robust questions at SWAC Media Day as a result of a report detailing how considered one of Sanders’ most coveted recruits was accused of assaulting a girl.
“A Clarion-Ledger reporter was punished for merely doing his job.” stated former Clarion Ledger Editor-in-Chief Marlon A. Walker. “The choice to intrude with a working journalist will not be solely disappointing, but additionally insupportable. It goes in opposition to the Clarion Ledger‘s relentless mission to freely and absolutely inform readers throughout Mississippi. It’s crucial to face robust in opposition to any try to disrupt that effort.”
Like Riley, Sanders ultimately lifted the ban. However like Riley, the injury had already been executed.
“It by no means felt just like the air had actually cleared, although.” Walker beforehand instructed Deadspin this. “Even after we modified reporters, it was troublesome. Deion Sanders made it troublesome for all native information reporters to cowl the soccer staff, primarily as a result of he most well-liked nationwide press, which was no secret.
This was not a column in protection of “the media” or reporters, as many on this business have executed – and proceed to do – silly issues that deserve ridicule and mistrust. Nevertheless, there are far too many occasions when “the media” and reporters are blamed for issues they did not do, or berated by the general public for not reporting on issues, when “the media” reporting on that factor is the one purpose is that they find out about it.
What has occurred in current weeks and months will not be new, as now we have seen earlier than in sports activities. However the subsequent time you see a coach droop/ban a reporter or forestall his gamers from showing at a press convention, know that it is as a result of he is dropping or operating away from a query that deserves to be answered.